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Mozart and other famous guests

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart stayed at the Dogana Vecchia Hotel from the 14th to the 31st January 1771.

He attended the performance of Giovanni Paisiello’s “Annibale in Torino” at the Teatro Regio. In 2006, on the occasion of the 250th anniversary of Mozart’s birth, two commemorative plaques were put up: the first at the entrance of the Hotel, by the “Associazione Mozart Italia” – Turin branch- and the second one on the front of the Hotel, by the Municipality of Turin.

On the second floor, the exhibition “Mozart in Turin” is set up designed by Fabio Zeggio and illustrated by Maurizio Galia.

San Giuseppe Benedetto Cottolengo

“On September the 2nd night, 1827, Canon Cottolengo assisted a poor ill stranger woman in his house and, shaken by infinite pity for human misfortunes, flared up in that yearning for good that became a daily prodigy in the small house of Divine Providence.”.

This writing stands on the front of the Dogana Vecchia Hotel and commemorates the institution of the first Canon Cottolengo projects of charity.

Giuseppe Verdi

Giuseppe Verdi stayed in Turin, essentially, for his political affairs. On September the 14th, 1858, after having just composed the opera “Un ballo in maschera“, Verdi went to Turin with a delegation, where he met Vittorio Emanuele II.

In 1861, he was elected deputy to the first Italian Parliament and then, encouraged by Cavour, he returned to Turin for the proclamation of the Kingdom of Italy.

Napoleone Bonaparte

On June the 22nd, 1800, Napoleone Bonaparte, at that time First Consul, came in Turin after defeating the Austrian army, in the battle of Marengo.

First, Napoleone ordered to knock down the city gates and bastions, saving only the Citadel and the Bastions of San Giovanni and Santa Adelaide, where later the Giardino dei Ripari was built. Napoleon visited Turin several times and for this reason, in his honour, the Royal Palace was renamed “Imperial Palace”.

Giambattista Bodoni

Giambattista Bodoni (1740-1813) was an engraver, typographer and printer, well-known in particular for the typefaces “Bodoni” he created. In his triumphant return to Piedmont, he went to Saluzzo, his hometown and then to Turin on June the 11th, 1798. He stayed at the Dogana Vecchia Hotel before continuing his trip to Parma, city where he lived for many years and where he died.

Francesco Crispi

Sicilian patriot and politician.

During his sojourn in Turin, he stayed at the Dogana Vecchia Hotel on December 1859, as he reported in his diaries.

He was an active promoter of the “Expedition of the Thousand” (Italian “Spedizione dei Mille”) and for this reason he became a significant figure of the “Italian Risorgimento”, which promoted the national unification. In 1861, he was deputy of the first Italian Parliament, later Minister of the Interior and then President of the Council of the Kingdom of Italy

Pietro Giannone

Pietro Giannone (1676-1748) was a Neapolitan writer and historian and also a prominent exponent of the Italian Enlightenment.

Because of his anticlerical positions, he was arrested by the Savoy army in Turin where he died imprisoned in the Citadel. He stayed at the Dogana Vecchia Hotel on November the 27th and the 28th 1735. Among his best-known works there are “Dell’istoria civile del Regno di Napoli” and “Il Triregno. Il Triregno. Del regno terreno, del regno celeste, del regno papale”, posthumously published, only in 1895.

Other celebrity guests:

Émile Gaboriau (1832-1873), French writer, author of the cycle of Monsieur Lecoq and initiator of the detective narrative, which paved the way for Sherlock Holmes.

Joseph Arthur de Gobineau (1816-1882), French diplomat, writer and philosopher. He owes his fame to his work “Essai sur l’inégalité des races humaines” (Essay on the inequality of human races).